I love Mitch's writing. In fact, I briefly wrote about him awhile back when I had the privilege of hearing him speak (he speaks just like he writes - very eloquently).
My love for him aside, I just knew this book would instantly be a new favorite of mine. I read a few reviews online before deciding to make the purchase. Of course, the fact that a chunk of the book takes place in Detroit was appealing to me, as I always feel the need to be a cheerleader for the city. But regardless of the local flavor, I was entranced.
If you aren't familiar, in the book Mitch tells the story of his interactions with two men of God - one being his childhood Rabbi and the other, a Pastor in Detroit. The two men don't share beliefs, backgrounds or skin color even, but they do share the one thing that often divides people: faith.
To shed light on these "Men of God" was what was so fascinating to me in this book - often people think of their pastor/reverend/priest/rabbi/spiritual leader as untouchable - maybe even perfect. This book proves that isn't the case at all. In fact, it shows they too can have doubts and fears, just like the rest of us.
The way Mitch interweaves both of these men's stories is amazing. I could go on and on with quotes and spoilers, but instead I've decided to leave you with a story I've heard before and was reminded of in the story. Read it and reflect.
The difference between heaven and hell
Heaven and hell are shown to a man. In hell, people sat around a banquet table, full of exquisite meats and delicacies. But their arms were locked in front of them, unable to partake for eternity.
"This is terrible," says the man. "Show me heaven now."
He was taken to another room, where things looked remarkably the same. Another banquet table, more of the same meats and delicacies. The souls there also had their arms in front of them. The difference was they were feeding each other.
I enjoy this story because it translates across all religious denominations and teaches us two lessons I believe we should think about each day: 1.) treat others how you want to be treated and 2.) you help yourself when you help others.